The Heat Is Online

Mongolian forest fires -- 1996

"Huge fires in Inner Mongolia extinguished"

BEIJING, May 2, 1996 -- (Reuter) - Chinese firefighters have completely extinguished huge fires in northern Inner Mongolia province that killed eight people, the Xinhua news agency said on Thursday.

Authorities mobilised 8,000 soldiers, forestry workers and miners to battle the blazes, which destroyed over 300,000 hectares (741,300 acres) of land, including 46,000 hectares (113,670 acres) of forest, in nine days, Xinhua said.

Fires from Mongolia swept over the Sino-Mongolian border last Tuesday after a nearly snowless winter left steppes and forests tinder-dry.

Chinese media has said over 470 fires have struck Inner Mongolia this year, three times as many as in the same period last year.

Also: "Snow, Used to Fight Fires, Kills Cattle in Mongolia," The Boston Globe, May 12, 1996.